Where to Visit on Your Trip to Italy

Apr 01, 2024


Hey hey congratulations!  You’re reading this which means you’re planning a trip to Italy.  Woohoo!  If you’re anything like me, when you started looking in to where to visit it immediately became overwhelming.  Even though Italy is a smaller country, there is so much to see and it can be hard to narrow down where to go. You can’t possibly do it all unless you have months upon months to spend there.


Below I’ve attached a map with the different regions of Italy.  I recommend picking an area to stick to: north, south, etc.

The first time I went we were in the north and the farthest south we went was Florence in Tuscany: so it was 100% in the north.  We went to Verona, in Veneto, the Cinque Terre, in Liguria, and Lucca and Florence, both in Tuscany.  On my second trip there we flew in to Rome, in Lazio, then traveled to Florence once again, Siena in Tuscany, and the Cinque Terre again.  I will say that Umbria looks AMAZING and I plan on spending a good amount of time there on my next visit.  I’d also love to visit more south of Rome but as I’m sure you understand, there is only so much time.


In this blog I will be sharing about the places I’ve visited and what I know about some others to help you maybe an educated decision about where to go and how much time to spend there.  I’m going to start in the north and sort of work my way south, with one exception (you’ll see).


Milan (3-4 days)

I’ve never been to Milan so it’s hard for me to give my input on this city.  It’s just never really called to me which is why I’ve never prioritized it.  But you never know what the future holds!  Milan is considered to be one of the world’s fashion and design capitals and has phenomenal architecture and history as well.  If you’re going to be spending your time in the north, not going south, you may want to consider putting this at the top of your list.


Venice (2 days)

I’ve also never been to Venice, haha!  We actually had in on our list for our last trip but at the last moment we opted out because it just wasn’t speaking to us.  Venice is a water town - which is super cool! - but we also have been to a lot of these when we lived in China so didn’t really feel the need to go to another one.  The attractions there looked similar to the other places we were already planning on going so we decided to go somewhere else instead (which I have no regrets and will share about later!). But if you’ve never been to a water town and will be in the north, you definitely will want to consider it.


Cinque Terre (2-3 days)

‘Cinque Terre” means “five lands.”  It has this name because it is made up of 5 small towns (Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso) that sit on the coast of Liguria.  I’ve been here twice and LOVE it!  In fact, it’s a UNESCO World  Heritage Site and an Italian National Park.  Keep in mind that these towns are kept alive by tourists and because of this the prices here will be a little higher.  It’s also slightly more remote which means it costs more to get items to the locations.  You can stay in one of the towns and hike to all of the others (I recommend doing this over 2-3 days as it is a lot of hiking).  You will also need a hiking pass for the trail which is around $20/day per person.  If you just want to do a little bit and not dedicate the whole time to hiking you can just hike to one neighboring town and then take the train to others.  The train right is about 2-3 minute per town.  For example, if you stayed in the town farthest (town 5) and took a train 2 stops away it might be 5-6 minutes on the train.  This is the kind of place that makes you feel like you’re in a story.  The view is unreal and water is a mesmerizing blue.  I stayed in Vernazza both times, it is considered the most beautiful of the 5, but I have been to all 5 as well. I will have to do a separate blog about each of the towns and more info on the hiking and things to do here.


Amalfi Coast (2-3 days)

The Amalfi Coast is actually in the south but I’m putting it here because many people debate on whether they should go to the Cinque Terre OR Amalfi Coast. While I have not been to the Amalfi Coast so I can’t say for sure, they seem fairly similar as when it comes to things to do, prices, etc. and the scenery seems similar as well.  What I would recommend is going to the one that geographically makes the most sense to you!


Pisa (.5-1 day)

We thought about doing a day trip to Pisa on our last trip.  I also drove past it on my first trip, but never went. Going through on the train it looks like a cute city and it seems the only thing really drawing people there is the leaning tower.  Which yes, is cool, but I personally wanted to spend my time elsewhere instead of a place packed with tourists just to see one thing.  So if you have the time or if you are traveling VERY light and can hop off the train there on your way from one destination to the next, do it.  Otherwise, maybe put it not so high on the list.


Florence (2-3 days)

Definitely go to Florence.  I’ve been twice and loved it each time. If possible, plan it before Rome because after Rome almost everything is not as impressive, haha!  But it most certainly is a special place with lots to do and is super walkable!  We didn’t need to take a taxi or bus at all when we were there.  The Duomo is the most popular attraction there but my personal favorites there were Pitti Palace and St. John’s Baptistry.


Siena (2-3 days)

Siena tied with Rome for my favorite places.  I could not pick between the two simply because they are so different I felt it was unfair to compare the two.  Siena is much slower and easy going than the other cities we visited. It also felt more Italian than the other places we visited: things didn’t start to open until 9/10 in the morning and you can’t get dinner before 7/8 - most reservations are for 10pm!  This was actually the place we opted to go instead of Venice and UGH I’m so happy we did.  We were there 1 full day and that is my only regret. It far succeeded my expectations.  If you are able to, I’ve also heard amazing things about a neighboring city, San Gimignano.  I don’t know much about it, but it looks beautiful and very similar to Siena.


Rome (5 days)

GO TO ROME.  I did not go to Rome on my first trip to Italy, it was just too far south.  But Rome blew my mind on so many different levels.  It opened my eyes to a lot of things and made me see history is not what we think it is.  There are hidden stories of the past and you simply cannot ignore if you see Rome with open eyes.  Go there and do everything.


Naples and Pompei (2 days)

I do not know much about Naples, but I've heard they have a great scene for glass art!  If you're in to this kind of art you should highly consider making it one of your priority destinations. Aside from this, the reason I would consider going here if I was spending most of my time in the south is because it is very close to Pompei, just about a 20-min train ride away.  Pompei is another UNESCO World Heritage Site.  It is the largest archaeological area in the world.  It’s said it was a resort city that was buried in volcanic ash in 79 A.D. when Mt. Vesuvius (an active volcano at the time) erupted.  We almost went there during the last trip. I personally a, skeptical of this story because they have molds from the preserved people they uncovered, and the people are still going every day things - not fearful or running away from lava.  It all seems strange to me and I still want to see it for myself.  They say these molds are exact replicas of what they found.  I have other reasons for being skeptical but this is just one.  Another thing to consider is that the sound is VERY humid.  If you're traveling in summer, be prepared.  Humidity makes things feel 10x hotter.  Be sure to wear loose and light clothing if you travel there in the summer.



Sicily: I haven’t been but I want to go!  It seems all of Italy is beautiful but the beauty just changes depending on if you go north, south, inland, or to the coast.  Sicily is an island off the boot of Italy (the very south) and on the coast: loaded with history and is known for The Valley of Temples and Mount Etna.  You’ll probably even feel a bit like you’re in Greece here since it used to be dominated by the Greeks.  If you have time you can also pop over to Malta.  Malta is another country but is still a place I’ve been wanting to go because of the ancient architecture and history.  P.S. It also looks super pretty.




Sardinia is another island that belongs to Italy.  It’s considered a parasite for anyone who loves the beach and water.  I imagine it to be super warm, calm, and full of delicious and healthy food.  I’ve never been but it’s said it has some of the clearest water and mountainous outlines.


Thank you so much for reading and I hope you have a WONDERFUL trip to Italy.  I'm currently working on putting together an Italy guide with things I recommend to do in each place so that you can create a unique experience of your own.  Of course it will only include the places I have traveled to but I will continue to add as I visit more places.


Come say hi to me on Instagram and tell me about the trip you're planning! xoxo


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